Eco Caminhos

Short Term in a self-sustaining Eco Farm

Nova Friburgo, Brazil show on map

NGO | Eco Caminhos

Join and experience life on a self-sustaining Eco Farm. A unique experience, Bioconstruction, permaculture, agroforestry, hikes in the mountains and camping weekends.

Eco Caminhos is a self sustainable Eco-Farm in Brazil, we have been working with volunteers since the very beginning of the project, we aim to become an example of a sustainable international community guided under the principles of Permaculture, growing and producing while being in balance with nature through organic farming, renewable energy, Agroforestry and Bioconstruction, but having the support as well of some degree of modern technology which needs to be used with resposability and in moderation. We aim to help the world change in the right direction, and we welcome any help from all corners of the world. 

In order to achive this in Eco Caminhos we believe healthy human development its a must, we must all learn to work hard together and respect each other’s cultures and backgrounds, we want to learn from our volunteers and for them to learn from us. Located two hours from Rio de Janeiro, in the beautiful mountains of Cardinot near the small city of Nova Friburgo we find ourselves away from the heptic rhythms of the modern system, we firmly believe this is a perfect environment for personal and community growth, we offer volunteers an amazing and unique experience, helping us in all the different sustainable projects in Eco Caminhos and eventually, with time, even having the support of the whole team to develop your own project if inspiration stikes you.

This Volunteer program is not about the work you will do on Bioconstruction, Agroforestry and Organic farming alone, it is about being part of a small but passionate community, contributing to it with your own personal touch and learning from us as well, growing as a person, discovering yourself in a natural, inspiring, hard-working and calm enviroment, we are not motivated by money or personal gain, what we want is to take care and help heal nature, human society included, would you like to help us?

What you'll be doing?

We make a custom schedule for each short-term volunteer so they really get the experience they want and need, allowing them to focus on an specific area if intended or having a wider experience of all the different projects in the farm.

Most short term volunteers choose to work 3 days, for a total of 24 hours a week, you will gain knowledge and hands on experience in Sustainable Living, Bioconstruction, Agroforestry  and Organic Farming here at Eco Caminhos. You'll be learning a range of techniques both theoretical and practical on this areas, all while sharing and working next to a team of long and short term volunteers from around the world. 

The other 2 days of the week plus weekends are yours to explore Brasil! Many of our volunteers choose to learn portuguese, travel in to Rio, or participate the many extra activities we can organize such as, horseback riding, hiking and many more. Your volunteer coordinator will be there to help you and organise your time in Brazil.

Starting  

During your first week here the different project coordinators will give introductory presentations on the different sustainable practices we apply in Eco Caminhos, after which you will be able to join and participate in the different projects of the Eco Farm, on Bio-construction, Agroforestry and Organic Farming.

Location  

Eco Caminhos is located in the beautiful inner mountains of the state of Rio de Janeiro, in the outskirts of a small rural city called Nova Friburgo. This area of Brazil is well know for being one of the world’s ecosystems with the highest amounts of biodiversity in both flora and fauna called the Atlantic Forest Biome. Eco Caminhos has several waterfalls both inside and around it, pure drinkable rivers all in the middle of truly amazing and imposing mountains, get inmersed in the magic of South American nature and the calmness that comes from it’s deep light blue skies and stary nights.    

Typical day

Short term volunteers participate of a variety of activities, having 3 days to work on the farm’s projects and the rest for free, volunteer’s weekly schedule are organized according to their own interests. Still a typical work day schedule always looks something like:

  • 6:00 AM - Wake up and breakfast
  • 7:00 AM - Work in Bioconstruction, Organic Farming or Agroforestry
  • 9:30 AM - Coffee Break
  • 9:45 AM - Work in Bioconstruction, Organic Farming or Agroforestry
  • 12:00 PM - Lunch & Break
  • 13:00 PM - Work in Bioconstruction, Organic Farming or Agroforestry
  • 16:00 PM - Finish work and head back to volunteer house
  • 17:00 PM - Portuguese lesson with native speaker
  • 19:00 PM - Dinner
  • 20:00 PM - Chilling out, Game Nights, Bonfires! (If scheduled)
  • 22:00 PM - Hit the hay

Details on Arrival

The tropical weather at Eco Caminhos allows us to recieve volunteers all year long, only depending on the number of available rooms and required positions

If you are interested we can do an online interview to get to know each other and answer all your questions.

Free-time activities

Eco Caminhos is situated at the outskirts of the 3 Picos Natural Reserve, part of the atlantic forest Ecosystem. It is a beautiful mountain region where you can do hikes, camping weekends, horseback riding and other outdoor activities. Every week we organize movie nights, games nights and volunteer nights with a campfire if possible, although volunteers live together this extra activities are awesome for integrating the team outside the work environment. Once every couple of weeks we organize a camping weekends as well.

Volunteers are free to do or go anywhere during their free time, still we organize extra activities they can choose to participate on, some free such as some hikes, others that have extra expenses need to be payed, like horseback riding trips.

You can also decide to go to the nearest town, Nova Friburgo, by yourself or with the other volunteers. A very calm and friendly town with a good infrastructure, a well-structured city with 180.000 inhabitants, far more secure than Rio de Janeiro. There is a busstop 500 meters from the farm that goes there every few hours. 

Or you can also take a three hour bus to Rio de Janeiro and spend your weekend there enjoying all that one of the most famous cities of Brazil has to offer.

Water Sports
Swimming
Concert/Music
Sightseeing
Climbing
Hiking
Museum/Opera
Sports
Riding
Yoga/Meditation

Program Requirements

In order to join the program you need to be at least 18 years old on the program start date. There might be exemptions if you can provide the permission of your legal guardian(s) or if your are accompanied by your parents.
Language Skills
You need to speak English (basic level)
Criminal Background Check
required
Required Documents
Copy of Passport or Travel ID
Nationality Restrictions
No restrictions. Helping hands from all over the world are welcome.
Other Skills
Nature lovers
Highly Motivated
Willingness to Learn
Time Commitment
Your helping hand will be required on Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 07:00 - 16:00

Suitable for

Singles
Couples
Families
50+

Included Services

Extra security layer by Volunteer World
Volunteer World is the world's leading comparison platform for international volunteer opportunities. We guide you through a safe and easy application process - including all necessary payments. Planning your next meaningful trip with Volunteer World gives you free access to our:
Quality Assurance
High ethical standards & transparent social impact
Flex Option
Change your reservation at no extra costs
Refund Guarantee
We refund your fees if Eco Caminhos cancels your trip
Resolution Support
We cover your back no matter what happens
Our services are free of charge!
All program fees are charged directly by Eco Caminhos.

Before your journey

Profound consulting and ongoing support (free)
Eco Caminhos (your host organization) provides consulting and is keen to answer all your questions. Once you reserved your spot, you will receive the contact details of your volunteer project.
Online preparation course (optional, from $49)
Prepare yourself and become a confident and well informed traveler. Global Travel Academy takes you on a journey before you leave home, helping you to become one of the world's greatest travelers. Our trusted partner for online learning offers courses in "International Volunteering", "Travel Health & Safety" and "Travel Safety Abroad".

On-site services

Services by Eco Caminhos

Training & hands-on Workshops, you will recieve comprehensive support from our project leaders on site. You will be able to really learn from them and gain practical skills on Bioconstruction, Organic Farming and Agroforestry, knowledge that you will take away for a lifetime.

- ingredients for all meals will be provided. Please note you may have to cook some meals as you will be in the cooking schedule.

Portuguese Lessons, We feel its important to become as integrated into the culture as possible and a 'bom dia' a day goes a long way! We will provide one hour of free portuguese lessons from native portuguese speakers for every week you stay with us. (More available on request).

Support & extra Activities, We also schedule weekly activities such as hikings, bonfires, workshops, museum & park visits and much more! (Just some of this activities will require extra fees) Our support team will be there for you every step of the way, we will do our best to provide you with info with anything you need, from your flights & visas to organising your weekends and trips. 

- Two housing options, at the volunteer compound or with a local Brazilian family

- WiFi: internet access at the volunteer houses

NOT INCLUDED  

 Airport Transfer: If requested we can put you in contact with our trusted driver Patrique, he can pick you up at the airport and leave you at Eco Caminhos doorstep. This however is not included, but Patrique charges only R$ 400 (approx 100 Euros) a very good price for such a trip here in Brazil.

Accommodation
There is 2 possible accommodation options:

-You can decide to live with other volunteers at the volunteer house, shared room mostly depending of available rooms. The house has all the basic needs. All meals are included and volunteers take turns cooking lunch during work days. There’s WiFi and serveral Volunteer Night Activities. 

-Another option is to homestay with a selected family next to the farm. These rural families are very nice and connected to Eco Caminhos. It will allow you to submerge in the Brazilian rural culture, food and customs, plus you will be able to practise your Portuguese on a daily basis.


Volunteer House:

- The volunteer compound has 2 houses, 2 kitchens and 6 double bed rooms.

- Shared Room

- It has all the facilities you need including WiFi and clothes washing machine.

- The perfect place to make friends and hang out after a long but rewarding day of work.

Homestay

- You will stay at the house of a local, carefully selected Brazilian family.

- Private Room

- The families offer you your daily meals. (When the family is not at home ingredients will be left for you, but it is expected that in this case volunteers cook for themselves)

- All homestay families are very close to the Eco Farm.

- Homestay is the perfect way to submerge yourself in Brazilian culture, food and the Portuguese language.

Bedroom (Single) Bedroom (Double)
Food & Beverages

Volunteer compound

-We provide volunteers with the ingredients/budget for all their meals. 

-The volunteers will have to cook themselves but we find this is a great way to bond with your fellow volunteers and explore the Brazilian culinary! 

-The budget is for breakfast, lunch and dinner however and anything over this budget is at the expense of the volunteers.

Homestay
For people who choose homestay, food is provided. During working days you will be eating at the Eco Farm. the rest of the time you will eat with the host family. We can tell you that the families are known for their delicious food.

Internet Access
Good access at the project site
What's NOT included?
Visa, flights, travel insurance or vaccinations are NOT included in the program fees. An airport pickup isn't included within the program fees either.
Flight Tickets
The nearest airport is Galeao Antonio Carlos Jobim International Airport (GIG) in Rio De Janeiro. We assist you to find cheap flights to Brazil.
Travel Insurance
Going abroad is an adventure and it is always best to be prepared. Sudden illness or injury, cancellation or theft - a travel insurance for Brazil provides security and is a plus to have.
Vaccines
If you are intending to volunteer in Brazil you should seek medical advice before starting your social journey. Check your required vaccinations for Brazil.
Costs (Prices in USD)
1 week (min. stay)
$305.00
2 weeks
$457.00
3 weeks
$610.00
4 weeks
$762.00
5 weeks
$914.00
6 weeks
$1,041.00
7 weeks
$1,168.00
8 weeks
$1,270.00
10 weeks
$1,448.00
11 weeks
$1,524.00
12 weeks (max. stay)
$1,575.00
Average fees
$218.00/week

You can volunteer at the project site in Nova Friburgo/Brazil between 1 week and 12 weeks. Please note that the above shown program fees are estimated and subject to exchange rate fluctuations. Eco Caminhos will let you know about the final price during your application process.
Crowdfunding Service
Generally, volunteering abroad involves certain costs. In case you need financial support, we will assist you to fundraise your volunteer program in Brazil.
Deposit (15%)
The deposit is simply to reserve your volunteer placement. Payments are handled by PayPal, our trusted global payment provider. If you don't have a PayPal account, you can also pay using a credit card.
Final Payment (85%)
Your final payment must be made up to 30 days before to the volunteer program starts. This payment is also securely handled by PayPal or credit card.
  Americas South America Brazil  Nova Friburgo, Estrada Ernesto Souza Cardinot s/n

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